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Poll Finds Frenchmen Do Not Share Press, Politicians’ Views on Gaullist Policies

A poll taken by France’s largest public opinion research organization has shown that the average Frenchman does not share the opposition to President Charles de Gaulle’s pro-Arab Middle East policies and his military embargo against Israel that has been strongly expressed by leading French political figures and most sections of the press. The poll was conducted at the end of January by the I.F.O.P. at the request of the mass circulation newspaper, France Soir.

It disclosed that 37 percent of those questioned approved the de Gaulle embargo on military equipment and spare parts to Israel and 37 percent disapproved. Thirty-three percent expressed disapproval of Gen. de Gaulle’s overall Middle East policy but 31 percent approved, an increase of one percent since the last poll was taken on the issue in December. A majority of Frenchmen–52 percent–approved of de Gaulle’s efforts to establish closer ties with Soviet Russia, a policy linked to France’s stand on the Middle East.